Two points are always relevant to this knee-jerk decrying of the newest fad.
Point the first: violent crime has fallen in the US as video game sales have gone up (source). If reports like this are allowed to ignore correlation/causation, so can we - though this is a stronger point with a greater dataset than anything ever offered as "proof" of vidya-games bein' bad.
Point the second: this same reaction has happened for the easy availability of books, movies, rock n roll, television and comics. It is a generational thing and you can find examples of it throughout the centuries, e.g. (source)
"The free access which many young people have to romances, novels, and plays has poisoned the mind and corrupted the morals of many a promising youth; and prevented others from improving their minds in useful knowledge. Parents take care to feed their children with wholesome diet; and yet how unconcerned about the provision for the mind, whether they are furnished with salutary food, or with trash, chaff, or poison?"
- Reverend Enos Hitchcock, Memoirs of the Bloomsgrove Family, 1790
It's old people running old media writing clickbait headlines to score easy points. Though I had hoped that by now, enough of the 80s generation that grew up with games would be in sufficient positions of influence to stop this crap from going round. Maybe in another decade.
If video games made you violent we'd be living in 28 Days Later by now. It's a bigger market than movies (and much bigger than music) and yet society is, if anything, getting less violent, less dangerous. If we were all indulging in something so destructive to morals I don't think we'd be as content as we are.
It is, of course, the other way round - violent people play violent games. And watch violent movies. And inflict cruelty on animals. But that's not as easy a story to write and throw out as the lies they keep peddling.
Countless hours were spent on UT99 shooting other players with a manner of weapons. Explosive razor-sharp discs, bio-hazardous sludge, burning-hot shrapnel, and even a thermonuclear missile if I were lucky enough to snatch the Redeemer..
Grand total of people I've killed in real life: 0
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